The power of moments: Creating lasting impressions in a service industry
Aug 29, 2018
Did you know Dog Appreciation Day was Aug. 26? Neither did I until recently. I was enlightened about this important fact by my canine-loving co-workers. (I’ve never been a dog person, but I’m working through my issues.) Coincidentally, a good chunk of our clients are also dog fans. So how did we celebrate the big day? By delivering ”pupcakes,” of course! This is just example one of the many things we have done to create memorable moments for our clients. What do I mean by moments? I’m talking about experiences that rise above the routine to make us feel engaged, joyful, amazed and motivated.
I recently read a book that inspired me to elevate our impact when it comes to client service, events and everyday interactions. The book is called “The Power of Moments,”and I would recommend you sprint down to Schuler Books (or your favorite local bookstore) and pick this up immediately after reading this post. Sorry to be bossy, but it’s that good.
I want to highlight three takeaways from this book that I have already began applying to my work and hopefully it will inspire you to do the same.
1.Boost the sensory appeal.
As an event planner and logistician, this one comes naturally for me. I’m always looking for ways to step up the experience of an event or initiative. One recent is example is our work on a project called Shaping the Avenue. A little over a year ago, we were hired to organize and execute several community engagement events that allowed community members to provide feedback on form-based code plans for the City of Lansing, City of East Lansing, Meridian Township and CATA (Capital Area Transportation Authority). At the end of the project, we had some additional grant funds remaining, so we decided to do something a little unexpected and create a physical mock-up of the proposed street design. This would give people the opportunity to actually use protected bike lanes, see how landscaping and public art can transform an area and realize it’s possible to condense lanes of traffic without the world coming to an end. We took an abstract concept and made it tangible. We also coordinated an Arts Night Out event in tandem with it to help drive people to the block, creating pop-up art galleries in each business and impromptu stages for performers on the sidewalks outside.
2.Break the script.
Planning campaigns is another specialty of ours, and we pride ourselves on the innovative ways we roll those out. But sometimes you get stuck in a rut after years of using the same system and processes. So, recently we decided to shake things up with the annual campaign we were creating for the Michigan Apple Committee. Instead of the typical checklist and assignment of roles, we decided to treat our campaign like the seasonal opening of an imaginary orchard, complete with a Tour Coordinator (ahem, that would be me, managing the influencer component), Doughnut Tester (account oversight and quality control) and Apple Picker & Inspector (social analytics and engagement). We also began the meeting with sparkling apple cider and apple strudels, as you do at an imaginary apple orchard. As a result, we were amazed with the results that came from our brainstorm meeting. And we were able to elevate the client’s voice!
3.Spark a moment of pride.
We are grateful to have won multiple awards for our work. It makes the working our asses off oh-so-worth-it when we are recognized for our contribution to the world. And we LOVE the clients we get to work with, so it’s rewarding to be able to tell them their message was heard loud and clear. In the past, we have written blog posts and press releases to announce our winnings, but this year we received several awards from the HERMES Creative Awards, receiving honors among top companies on an international level.
We were so proud that we could keep the excitement to ourselves. We wanted our clients to know we appreciate them, and we believe in what they are doing. So instead of the normal news release, we surprised them with a special delivery of balloons and a framed award certificate. As the person made these deliveries, it was so fun to see the smiles on the faces of the people who work equally hard day in and day out.
Moments matter. We believe what we do has extraordinary impact. So why not make it remarkable?